Playing At Neutral Venues is Damaging Our Cricket, Says Inzamam-ul-Haq
Former Pakistan skipper – Inzamam-ul-Haq – while expressing his disappointment over Pakistan playing at an adapted home venue, has insisted that playing away from home is damaging the team’s game.
None of the current Pakistan Test players had played a Test in their home country which had not hosted a Test since 2009 when armed terrorists attacked Sri Lankan team bus. Consequently, Pakistan team had to shift its base in UAE and the former batsman feels it has been tough on the players.
“It is very sad that we have to play our home games in neutral venues. It is damaging our cricket as our players don’t get the chance to play in our conditions, in front of our fans. It is very sad for Pakistan,” Inzamam told Cricbuzz. “It is very tough on the players and we have suffered a lot. Hopefully things will get better in another two years’ time.”
The situation, however, is improving at the moment. Recently, the Pakistan Cricket Board successfully staged the three-match T20I series against a World XI side in Lahore which is seen as the first step towards resumption of international cricket in the country.
Sri Lanka are also in line to visit Pakistan for a T20I later this month. Inzamam thanked the Sri Lankan team and hoped that it would pave the way for the arrival of more teams.
“I would like to thank the Sri Lankan board for agreeing to play the game. Apart from that last tour, whenever the Sri Lankans have come to Pakistan they have liked the country and done well. Similarly the Pakistani people also love the Sri Lankan team. Once the Sri Lankan team comes, hopefully in the next two or three years things will improve and Pakistan will regularly host matches,” said the legendary batsman.
Inzamam also said that the team would recover from the retirement of Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan and would start doing well in the coming days. Playing their first Test after the departure of the two stalwarts, Pakistan suffered a 21-run defeat against Sri Lanka while chasing a modest 136. However, Inzamam is hopeful the team would not suffer much after the retirement of the two players.
“The current team has lot of young players. Those who are playing the Test series are in the learning process after Misbah and Younis left. These are talented youngsters and [with] a bit more experience, after couple of months, this will become a good team,” Inzamam said.
“We are not looking at just two players to fill the void but a few youngsters to take the Pakistani team forward. We have so much talent in the country. Our people love the sport and if you see in every street and road people are playing cricket. That’s why good talents are emerging regularly,” Inzamam concluded.
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